Boston Scientific has reached an agreement to buy Augmenix for $500m in upfront cash and up to an additional $100m in sales-based milestones.

A privately-held company, Augmenix has developed and commercialised the SpaceOAR System, a therapy offered to men to reduce the common and debilitating side effects of prostate cancer radiotherapy.

The SpaceOAR hydrogel is injected into the patient before radiation therapy, which creates additional space between the rectum and prostate during treatment. This reduces the rectal radiation dose and associated side effects.

“The transaction, subject to customary closing conditions, is scheduled to close early in the fourth quarter of 2018.”

A single injection of the hydrogel is claimed to maintain the space between the rectum and prostate for three months and reabsorbed by the body within six months.

Boston Scientific MedSurg president Dave Pierce said: “The acquisition furthers our category leadership strategy in urology and the SpaceOAR hydrogel is a crucial addition to our growing prostate health treatment portfolio of products that improve the quality of life and clinical outcomes for men with prostate cancer and benign prostatic hyperplasia.

“The injection of this hydrogel during a minimally-invasive, in-office procedure can reduce the unwanted and unintended side effects of prostate radiation and provide substantial peace of mind for patients and their treating physicians.”

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The company conducted clinical trials of SpaceOAR hydrogel in Europe and the US demonstrating that the space created reduces the amount of radiation delivered to the rectum. It has been used in more than 30,000 patients globally.

The transaction, subject to customary closing conditions, is scheduled to close early in the fourth quarter of 2018.